CBS News reported on Wednesday that a Texas boy, 14, was discovered living in a 24-hour Walmart. He had been there for four days. The teenager has a history of running away and living in abandoned properties. It was said he would rather do that than live with relatives in Corsicana.
While living in the store, the boy took full advantage of the merchandise by eating food from the shelves. He took clothes from the racks in the boys' department and changed them several times a day. He wore diapers so he wouldn't be caught going to the bathroom multiple times during the day and night. He wasn't just hiding. He had built two separate secret compounds in the store that kept him out of sight of shoppers and surveillance cameras.
According to the New York Daily News, one of the hiding places of the unidentified teen was in the baby department between baby products and boxes of baby strollers. The other place was among stacks of toilet papers and paper towels. The unidentified teen constructed a make-shift bed, and even stole a fish to keep as a pet.
Perhaps if the boy had been neater, he wouldn't have been caught for a while. He was eventually caught after store employees found piles of trash.
Child Protective Services say the teen has been returned to his relatives, and they haven't been asked to investigate the case as they usually do. Walmart isn't expected to file criminal charges.
This is a case of life imitating art because the same year the 14-year-old was born in 2000, the movie "Where the Heart Is" was release. The movie is about the true story of the life of 17-year-old Novalee Nation who was moving cross-country with her boyfriend when he leaves her at a Walmart in Oklahoma. Having no money and no where to go, seven-months-pregnant Novalee lives at Walmart undetected until she gives birth to her daughter in the store in the middle of the night.
Instead of pressing charges for stealing merchandise for weeks, the president of Walmart gives Novalee $500 after the birth of her child, and she eventually gets a job at the same store.
Don't these stories make you want to look closer while shopping at Walmart?